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and mitch mcconnell were back at the capitol in no time. mcconnell gathered his members to inform them of the work that needs to be done. >> we had a good meeting down at the white house. we are engaged in discussions, the majority leader and myself and the white house, in the hopes that we can come forward, as early as sunday, and have a recommendation, that i can make to my conference and the majority leader can make to his conference, so we'll be working hard to try to see if we can get there in the next 24 hours. so i'm hopeful and optimistic. >> i'm going to do everything that i can. i'm confident senator mcconnell will do the same. but everybody, this is -- whatever we come up with is going to be imperfect and some people aren't going to like it. some people will like it less, but that's where we are. and i feel confident that we have an obligation to do the best we can and that was made very clear in the white house. and we're going to do the best we can for the caucuses that we have and the country that's waiting for us to make a decision. >> but the president was in no playful
leader mitch mcconnel are working on a deal. he meet with them along with house speaker john boehner and house democratic leader nancy pelosi.at the white house for about an hour today. he said the meeting was good and constructive. but expressed his frustration for the american people with waiting until stories... >> america wonders why you cannot get things done in this town in an organized timetable. why does everything have to wait until the last minute? now, we are at the last minute. the american people are not going to have many patients for a self-inflicted wound to our economy. >> reporter: coming up at 5:30 we'll have more from the president. and our political analyst michael yaki will give us his take on today's developments. >> catherine: there's rain on the way this holiday weekend. this is a live look from our camera on mount tam. and a look at downtown san francisco. i'm here in the weather center with jacqueline bennet -- where is the wet weather? >> jacqueline: we are still getting some return on the radar but it is still too dry for the rain to hit the ground. it wi
americans' tax rates are scheduled to go up by law. >>reporter: senators harry reid and mitch mcconnell returned to the senate floor, pledging to work through the weekend. >> we are engaged in discussions, the majority leader and myself and the white house, in the hopes that we can come forward as early as sunday and have a recommendation. >> we're going to do the best we can for the congresses we have and for the country that's waiting for us to make a decision. >>reporter: democratic and republican leaders have agreed to extend jobless benefits and some tax increases, but the income threshold is not yet clear. the president and senate leaders are expressing optimism that they'll get the job done, but the president has a backup plan just in case. >> if an agreement isn't reached in time between senator reid and senator mcconnell, then i will urge senator reid to bring to the floor a basic package for an up-or-down vote. >>reporter: that bear bones bill would preserve tax cuts for the middle class and extend unemployment benefits. it would also lay a foundation for a broader deal to c
, something that has zero chance of passing the senate. meanwhile, senate minority leader mitch mcconnell knocked heads with reid but also sounded amenable to some kind of deal. >> the so-called senate bill that the majority leader keeps referring to passed with only democratic votes. last night i told the president it would be happy to look at whatever he proposes but the truth is we're coming up against a hard deadline here and as i said, this is a conversation we should have had months ago. hopefully, there's still time for an agreement of some kind that saves the taxpayers from a wholly, wholly preventable economic crisis. >> but is it just more political posturing? senate majority leader reid returned to the floor to encourage speaker boehner to take the deal president obama offered before boehner tried to pass his disastrous plan b. >> again, the speaker can't take yes for an answer. the president has presented him something that would prevent us from going over the cliff. it was in response to something the speaker gave to the president himself. but again, i guess with the dysfunct
majority leader harry reid and mitch mcconnell on the senate floor. first, an update on where negotiations stand after the meeting between president and congressional leaders at the white house. >> steven dennis joins us from the role call as a white house reporter. stephen, how did the meeting between the president and congressional leaders go? >> i think it was a meeting where they may be set the framework for getting a short- term deal to avert tax increases for most americans, extend unemployment benefits, and maybe take care of a few other small things. at this point, it is a race against the clock and it is up to harry reid and mitch mcconnell and the senate to see if they can have a bipartisan compromise. the president said if he cannot come up with something in the next couple days, he wants harry reid to bring a bill to the floor that would do with the president wants to do, which is tax increases, extend unemployment benefits, etcetera, at least get a vote on it. harry reid has announced that he will prepare that bill and in the meantime he is trying to reach agreement with mccon
. i think the key player is mitch mcconnell to watch. we're getting potentially more information about what is happening next. our capitol hill producer deidre walsh was there when some of the leaders returned and she spoke with nancy pelosi who said this meeting was constructive and candid. here's what is especially interesting. nancy pelosi told reporters that the president led a meeting that ended with senators reid and mcconnell trying to work something out between the two of them. now it seems like we've gone from a process that was president obama and speaker boehner and then today to five leaders back to two. and those two, for the moment, seem to be senator reid and senator mccon until. also, i had a source in senator mcconnell's office who said we should be getting a statement from the republican leader of the senate any time now. so that statement will tell us a lot, candy. >> it will. but we also know that even though it's in the senate hands now which is basically where speaker boehner tossed it when he couldn't get his plan b passed by his own caucus, it doesn't mean that
-mart is going to sell but how mitch mcconnell and president are going to do in the future. so it's causing people to pull back from making investments and that is what powers the economy in the long run. >> arthel: here is a question. we all paid those higher taxes when president clinton was in office and everybody seemed to be doing well. so what is different now? the same people paying higher taxes then, why are they reluctant now. they feel the government doesn't know what to do with the money? >> we know what they do with the money, they waste a tremendous amount of it. to president clinton's credit those tax hikes came within the environment of deregulation, rules were cut back and we have the opposite going on right now. consumers elect to go spend but consumers are reluctant and producers are going up and regulatory costs makes it hard to make a buck in this type of environment. >> arthel: all right. happy new year. thank you so much. >> secretary of state hillary clinton is returning to the state department next week after three weeks off from a stomach virus and concussion that ke
of legislation would look like and reports they got from republicans and the president told mitch mcconnell that he would get the details. that's where from the perspective of republicans where things stand. the president publicly said before he left for his vacation in hawaii since everything else was deadlocked, despite everybody's efforts, because of that what he wants to happen is for the very least for congress to pass a tax cut extension for 98% of americans. his plan which he campaigned on for five years. mitch mcconnell spoke to the president as did the other leaders before the president left hawaii. what mcconnell aide is still saying is that the impression he got is that the white house would or at least some democrat whether it's the white house or harry reid's office would provide the details of what that legislation would look like. they said with tongue firmly in cheek, we checked in a process conference and it can't get through the senate. we need to see if anything will get done and at the same time jessica is hearing from white house sources, i am hearing for democratic sou
? there is a lot of buzz on capitol hill. mitch mcconnell, who will be attending a white house meeting told us a few moments ago that we are always the running out of time. chairman max baucus, the democrat says that he thinks this will fiscal cliff matter comes down as one white house meeting two hours from now. another top senate republican said a short time ago that he was calling on president obama to lead. >> the president is not a senator anymore. he's a president. just as president reagan worked to deal with tip o'neill and bill clinton and president eisenhower, we need leadership on not just taxing rich people, but we contact them and it wouldn't help the medicare fiscal cliff. greg: others are skeptical, noting that high-profile meetings are for show often times and all about tactics. we expect the president will try a stopgap measure extending middle-class tax rates, extending unemployment benefits for some 2 million americans, do some small spending cuts now, but not entitlement reform. an ally of the white house and the house of representatives offered this. >> this is not for show
mitch mcconnell, house speaker john boehner and house democratic leader nancy pelosi met at the white house yesterday afternoon with the president and vice president. here's where things stand right now. the senate leaders are meeting aiming to avoid tax hikes. and they may vote on a deal sunday or perhaps on monday. jessica yellin is our chief white house correspondent. lisa day jar dayne is on capitol hill. the president used his bully pulpit to reinforce the idea that senators need to get busy. so let's listen. >> the american people are watching what we do here. obviously, their patience is already thin. this is deja vu all over again. america wonders why it is that in this town for some reason, you can't get stuff done in an organized timetable, why everything always has to wait till the last minute. we're now at the last minute. and the american people are not going to have any patience for a politically self-inflicted wound to our economy. not right now. >> so jessica, you were in the room for the president's remarks. on a scale of 1 to 10, let's measure the anger perhaps that
to negotiate. we have not heard a word from leader mcconnell. nothing is happening. >> reporter: mitch mcconnell, the top republican in the senate, said it's reid who hasn't reached out for weeks. >> the phone never rang. and so now here we are, five days from the new year, and we might finally start talking. >> reporter: but talking about what? so far, reid has not introduced the scaled-down bill he was reportedly working on over the christmas holiday. sources say that bill would extend the bush-era tax cuts for americans making less than $250,000 a year. with the clock ticking, reid pointed a finger at the house of representatives, which still hasn't returned to washington. >> i can't imagine their consciences. they're out wherever they are around the country, and we're here trying to get something done. >> reporter: from his home in ohio, speaker boehner called on the house to come back this sunday, december 30. that's just one day before the fiscal cliff deadline when income tax cuts and payroll tax cuts are set to expire, $110 billion worth of spending cuts kick in, and two million jobless
and harry reid. republicans mitch mcconnell and john boehner. those four members of congress are expected to make the drive from the capital, which you see on the right, down pennsylvania avenue, to the white house, there on the left. and we expect them to enter through a side door on the west side of the mansion. that's the entrance right there. and they'll meet with the president. in the oval office. beginning, we're told, at 3:00 p.m., less than one hour from now. and just four days ahead of the so-called fiscal cliff. so a very big moment in the nation's capital. and to walk us through what might happen we turn to jessica yellin, a chief white house correspondent. jessica, we said up front, it is a long shot, give us a best case scenario. >> reporter: the best case scenario would be that all the leaders walk out of this meeting and say they have a deal. the two senators say they can bring it to a vote, and none of their members will filibuster it. house speaker john boehner says he will bring it to the house floor for a vote before new year's eve and house minority leader nancy pelosi
. >> reporter: for the first time, republican leader mitch mcconnell described himself as hopeful and optimistic. >> we had a good meeting down at the white house. we are engaged in discussions, the majority leader and myself and the white house, in the hopes that we can come forward as early as sunday and have a recommendation that i can make to my conference, and the majority leader can make to his conference. >> reporter: the progress came as members on both sides were growing doubtful congress could get anything done before the deadline. nebraska democrat ben kesselon: >> if we don't have a deal within the next 24 hours, the question is, where do you buy a parachute? it looks like we'd be going over the cliff. >> reporter: but leader reid had this warning about the shape of a deal to come. >> everybody, whatever we come up with is going to be imperfect and some people aren't going to like it. some people will like it less, but that's where we are. >> reporter: up until now, reid and mcconnell have kind of been sitting on the sidelines as the president and speaker boehner tried but failed to
afternoon and senate republican leader mitch mcconnell responded. take a listen. >> speaker boehner should call members of the house back to washington today. he shouldn't have let them two in fact. they're not here. they're not here. john boehner seeps to care more about keeping his speakership than about keeping the nation on firm financial footing. >> reporter: there have been all eyes on senator mitch mcconnell, the republican leader, the counterpart to harry reid because he has been pretty quiet early on in the negotiations. was defering speaker boehner to give the republican side. after hearing senator reid yesterday, senator mcconnell fired back. take a listen. >> we're coming up against a hard deadline here and i said, this is a conversation we should had months ago. and republicans aren't about to write a blank check for anything senate democrats put forward just because we find ourselves at the edge of the cliff. >> reporter: now senator mcconnell also said he was disappointed because when he got a call from the president two nights ago right before the president left hawaii to c
and nancy pelosi leading republicans mitch mcconnell and john boehner. no deal can be reached in past without their cooperation. with the meeting comes a glimmer of hope. in the past all the ifisical cliff talks meetings like this have been the least productive of all. whether he meant to or not the senate majority leader may have spoken for a nation exhausted by seemingly endless fiscal cliff negotiations. >> what's going on here? >> reporter: what indeed. president obama returned to the white house in a grim mood. he met with no congressional leaders and said nothing about his efforts to avert the fiscal cliff, talks continue between senior white house and congressional staff, but that's been true throughout this entire saga. with the deadline looming there were dire predictions. >> come the first of this year americans will have less income than they have today. >> reporter: and recriminations. >> now republicans have bent over backwards. we stepped way, way out of our comfort zone. we wanted an agreement. but we had no takers. >> reporter: the senate's top dem
. office of mitch mcconnell but he spoke with other items what they did not speak about the fiscal cliff? >> they spoke with they spoke at each other at the pulpit for blaming each other for what is going on there. this really is what is what the blame game is talking about what the problem is that the american people are concerned. there are a lot of other business that the congress has not dawned that the fiscal cliff is taking up a lot of room what men. the congress has not-to-dawn with unemployment benefits. and what congress has not done- and if the fiscal cliff is taking up too much brentwood. even with that band with, they're not going forward they're taking up too much -- bandwidth. >> grant: if you'd like to connect with michael -- you can follow him on "at- yaki-blog." >> grant: former president george h-w bush remains in intensive care at a houston hospital tonight. the bush camps is remaining mostly silent -- providing no details today about his medical condition. mister bush -- who is 88- year-old. was hospitalized last month for a nasty cough related to bronchitis. he is no
. it it is up to mitch mcconnell, the republican leader in the senate and harry reid, the democratic leader in the senate. if they can come up with something and mcconnell would have to agree not to filibuster, if they could come up with something and pass it and then send it back to the house and if boehner would permit a vote knowing he would only have a minority of his own party and he would have enough democratic votes to pass it, those are two things that have to happen. whether those can happen qukly enough to raw void the cliff remains to be seen. but it will take some cooperation on the senate side and boehner's willingness to let it come up in the senate knowing his own party won't necessarily support -- won't support it enough to avoid the cliff. we need some leadership here. >> matt it has to come from both parties and from the president. and let's face it, congressional approval ratings are a low, low. what is the impact of this? do you think american voters are sick and tired of things coming down to the wire? they will be hit hard? just about everybody after the first of the y
this morning the. that is what the weather was like as mitch mcconnell came to work in trying to reach a deal. if you cannot forge a deal with democrats, here is what is at stake. let's look first of all at what is involved in talks. at the top of the list, tax rates, if we go over the fiscal cliff, tax rates will go up 9-33% for most all americans. now, that would also mean havoc for payroll companies and the irs that have to struggle how to handle withholding starting on january 1st and unemployment benefits. those ran out today. so that is something that republicans and democrats we understand are talking about right now. so, what else is at stake in the fiscal cliff? let's look at the other issues, things that we are not sure will be in a deal that comes out this week. at the top of the list, government spending cuts that is 8-10% in cuts to every federal agency. and a pay cut for medicare doctors of 27% that would hit after january 1st and finally, don, there's a slew of other tax hikes. the minimum tax and the estate tax. that is everything that would hit average americans. the fiscal c
that. the hope for any deal before january 1st is that somehow minority leader mitch mcconnell could convince his troops, convince the republicans not to block it with a filibuster. each individual senator makes up their own mind, each senator has the right to stage a filibuster. so that's not something he can control entirely. a bigger issue, though, i have to edadmit, when you look at senator mcconnell and why he's so important right now is that he needs to bring some republicans on board this deal for a couple reasons. first, they need those republican votes to get anything through the senate. and then second of all, speaker boehner needs some cover, he needs some way to convince republicans in the house that they should pass this deal. conservatives are putting pressure on all sides and republicans in the house want to be to say conservativings in the senate supported this. i can too for the good of the country even though i don't like it. these are the dynamics in play. a lot of politics, a lot at stake. and this is why all focus is on senator mcconnell because he can bring so m
mitch mcconnel called the meeting with president obama good. taxes go up for all americans and traásic cuts will hit -- and drastic cuts will hit the national budget. >>> the dow fell 158 points, and the nasdaq fell 25 points. >> they may you know want to do something illegal just to put food on the table. >> coming up in 18 minutes finally strapped the hundreds of thousands of people set to feel the impact of the financial cliff starting tomorrow. >>> a sixth suspect has now been charged in connection with a beating and homicide in san francisco where the victims were bound and gagged. ktvu's david stevenson was in court today and tells us for the first time the district attorney talked about a possible motive. >> cameras were not allowed in this san francisco courtroom as prosecutorred announced a sixth suspect in a brutal beating and homicide in which two victims were left beaten and gagged. katherine uong described as a felon nicknamed killer is the first to be charged with the killing. an 18-year-old woman was found with reed also severely beaten she is now recovering. george
, mitch mcconnell appears to be more flexible. the senator sent an e-mail suggesting he's negotiating an acceptable deal with the white house. >>> stocks rebounded today on news that the house would reconvene on the fiscal cliff after diving more than 150 points the dow bounced back to lose only 18 points. it was the fourth straight day of losses. >> i don't know there's a word to describe how -- the public is going to be. >> why california is going to take an extra hit if we go over the fiscal cliff. >>> new at 10:00, a man was critically wounded at a shooting in an east b.a.r.t. station. it happened this afternoon at the bay point station. service was interrupted for some time while police searched if station but they did not turn up a suspect. the victim only described as a male was taken to the hospital with what is being called serious injuries. >>> 1,170 people were arrested for dui statewide compared to 1,080 in 1990. in the bay area 165 people have been arrested for dui and there have been three fatal collisions. last year there were 188 arrests and no fatalities. >>> happenin
're shifting negotiation tactics now to a group of two. two senators, mitch mcconnell and harry reid, the two party leaders in the senate, are going to be trying to find a way to get a deal today. we know their staff is talking. we don't expect actually any necessary meetings between those two leaders right away today. we think that their chiefs of staff are going to be on the phone, via e-mail. this reported from our producer, ted barrett. perhaps tonight they'll see if the leaders can sit down and get together something to present to their various caucuses. now as i said, it was silent until yesterday. then we heard many people speaking. again, we heard from president obama this morning talking about how important it is to try and get a deal done this week. >> you meet your deadlines, your responsibilities every single day. the folks you sent here to serve should do the same. we cannot let washington politics get in the way of america's progress. we've got to do what it takes to protect the middle class, grow this economy, and move our country forward. >> that was the president's weekly add
24 hours would be very important as he and mitch mcconnell put together something that would pass both of their caucuses. and then of course it would have to go to the house. the majority leader harry reid said he's readying a bill for a vote on monday to prevent a tax hike on incomes up to $250,000. senator reid said his bill will include unemployment benefits, a continuation of those. that would be sort of the plan b for democrats simply because what they would rather do is get a bill with senator reid working in conjunction with senator mcconnell. senator reid said he's awaiting good faith proposals from the republicans. president obama said after the meeting that he is modestly optimistic a deal can be reached, but as you can hear from senator reid, the president asked that if a deal between republicans and democrats cannot be reached, then the president wants just an up or down vote on what he wants, which is quite simply no income tax rates going up for people making $250,000 and under. and an extension of long-term unemployment benefits. and that's of course for the long-te
for democratic leader harry reid and republican leader mitch mcconnell are trading proposals. even if they agree, they still need the support of the caucuses. that's no sure thing. then the plan needs to pass the house too. and speaker john boehner has shown he can't control how his caucus votes. if the senate fails to act, president obama wants it to consider a much smaller plan, one that at least would stop middle class tax hikes, at least. but republicans could block a vote on that. did you get all that? >>> by now, you're probably asking how did we get in this mess? cnn's ali velshi breaks it down for us. >> now we have passed a bold package of tax relief for america's families and businesses. >> reporter: it starts more than a decade ago, when then president george w. bush initiated a series of tax cuts for all americans. but it's a deal with a devil. the cuts, which are politically expedient but costly to government, expire in ten years' time. >> both houses of congress have now passed a package of tax relief that will protect the middle class. >> reporter: when it came time for the cuts t
. this is spokesperson from senator mitch mcconnell's office. last night the president called senator mcconnell, the first democrat to do so on the fiscal cliff since thanksgiving and other leaders to talk about the need for the senate to act. the leader is happy to review what the president has in mind but to date the senate democrat majority has not put forward a plan. when they do members on both sides of the aisle will review the legislation and make decisions on how to best proceed, end quote. this is a serious back and forth. let's get some perspective. chief congressional correspondent mike emanuel is live for us in washington. a short time ago, another key lawmaker did not sound very optimistic, mike. >> reporter: harris, you would be right. that would be senate majority leader harry reid. seemed kind of irritated that house republicans and all house members are not here in washington trying to work out a deal on the fiscal cliff. here is more from leader reid a short time ago. >> if we go over the cliff and it looks like that's where we're headed, mr. president, the house of rep
? the republican leadership, mitch mcconnell and john boehner and the whole rest of them made an unholy alliancalliance. they said instead of watching the tea party rise up and become a third force in american politics, which is what says, they said we're going to try to bind these two things together. we don't wants it to sflit apart the right. we try to pretend like we're one party. they're clearly not one party. john boehner may get re-elected as speaker, but he has no more authority to control the caucus to get them to stroet for his own budget proposals than he does today. the optics may change and we'll go over the cliff and taxes go up and they're presented with the ability to lower taxes and john boehner won't have any authority because he tries to run two parties and not one. until republicans deal with na and until the leadership says we made a mistake, these are a different group of people and have darch the agenda for us, they stop us taking national power. until that happens, we'll be in the mess for a another couple of years at least. >> i totally agree with that. i think
for it, if mitch mcconnell makes it happen, then republican in the house would see that there's a bipartisan deal on the table, and they would not likely turn it down. that is to say the leadership would put it on the floor. it would pass with many democratic votes, not a majority of republican votes, but a significant number of them, and john boehner would likely having been jammed by his own membership on plan b would probably not block that. at least that's the calculation and the hope by those negotiating this deal. >> john, this is one of those moments where everyone's scratching their heads and wondering why this is always so difficult. why is deal-making such a laborious process in congress. you make the point that it's been building up the last generation or so. >> it has been, and it's gotten to a point now where you have the ideological divisions overlapped with the partisan ones. you have a conservative republican party, liberal democratic party, and the patterns of opposition, a permanent warfare between the two make it very difficult to surmount those divisions. a
and mitch mcconnell have been radio silent on negotiations. joining me is will kain and roland martin, a political analyst and columnist. welcome to you both. >> good to see you. >> good to see you. i'm just so sad we have to talk about the fiscal cliff. let's start with you, roland. harry reid comes out and says the house isn't in session. the president is back. the house is going nowhere. john boehner is doing a terrible job and we'll likely go off the cliff because of the republicans. >> it's interesting. this morning i talked to congressman e moon yule cleaver and part of the issue deals with the house rules. they have to have 48-hours notice to come back to washington, d.c. republicans also have a rule -- >> like there are phones. >> but again, the problem is the house rule that they must wait 72 hours to act on legislation. they can always suspend that rule, frankly change it for this particular purpose. that's part of the problem. they waited so long. this is also one of the reasons why congress should have kept their butt in washington, d.c. to get this problem solved because
is with mitch mcconnell because this will have to, if we're going to get a deal done originate in the senate. really the roadblock, absolutely democrats will have to compromise on spending cuts 100% but republicans where we have a standstill on this idealogical difference do we raise taxes at all so yeah. gregg: let me ask tony about that since he is the republican. speaker boehner, tony, couldn't even bring his plan up for a vote. i mean it was pretty embarrassing. has he lost control of his own party and failed in his job as leader in the house? >> well, look, speaker boehner has a very hard task and he has already tried ernestly you say a lot of things about him but can't say he hasn't tried to bring two ideas in the forefront. one that works within the bowles-simpson, bipartisan debt commission's framework of tax revenue being part of it but the majority of reform coming from spending cuts. he had the plan b which i think fairly raises threshold. gregg: that was easy for republicans to pass and he couldn't even get votes to put it on the floor. >> without a doubt, gregg, that was a failu
boehner and mitch mcconnell and harry reid need to come back and make sure their membership -- boehner couldn't deliver the other day -- make sure the membership, and by the way, boehner may have to go with democrats plus a minority of republicans to get the job done. gregg: yeah. >> this is about the welfare of this country, not about the welfare of a political party. gregg: all right. brad, the fiscal cliff is one of the reasons why people are so incredibly gloomy about the future, and, you know, dick's making the point here when speaker john boehner can't even get his own party to follow him and put up a vote on his plan, i mean, aren't republicans equally to blame for the public's profound pessimism? >> well, we have a divided nation, that is for sure. this president has not done his job in leading, and had he done his job in leading especially in the fiscal cliff, he wouldn't be in hawaii now, he'd be in washington making sure that we had a deal -- gregg: has boehner done his job? >> boehner has done a great job in trying to lead republicans to a solution. gregg: seriously? >> abs
leader mitch mcconnell to say what are you willing to accept? so here we are. there is blame game going on. there is lot of maneuvering still. bottom line we'll probably meet this weekend heading up to the fiscal cliff and we'll see what the final offer is to see if they can push it across the finish line. gregg: mike, we're getting word the president has nod no meaningful conversation with anybody own capitol hill, especially john boehner and yet we do hear, that, you know, the seeds have been talking. that staffers have actually been negotiating. what do you hear? >> reporter: that's right. we heard there have been ongoing discussions, taking place throughout the christmas holiday but at this point republicans are saying they took a beating, if you will, trying to lead in the house, a deal that did not go very far. so they're saying, okay, harry reid, senate democrats, see what you can do, see what you put forward and see if it is good enough to possibly pass both the senate and the house that is a tricky situation to navigate at this point because the senate and house are obviously q
adjourned yesterday, majority leader harry reid and minority leader mitch mcconnell debated the fiscal cliff and talked about negotiations surrounding the tax hikes and automatic spending cuts scheduled to take effect in a few days. this is about 5 minutes -- 15 minutes. >> madam president, you'll excuse me if i'm a little frustrated at the situation we find ourselves in, but last night president obama called myself and the speaker and maybe others from hawaii and asked if there was something we could do to avoid the fiscal cliff. i say i'm a little frustrated, because we've been asking the president and the democrats to work with us on a bipartisan agreement for months, literallye for months. a plan that would simplify theod tax code, shrink the deficit, protect the taxpayers and grow the economy. but democrats consistently rejected those offers. the president chose instead to spend his time on the campaign trail. reelected. and congressional democrats sat on theirel hands. now republicans have bent over backwards. we stepped way, way out of our comfort zone. we wanted an agreement. w but w
widespread support from mitch mcconnell and the leadership, but just a few who are maybe retiring, or leaving the senate. >> reporter: that's a great question. first and foremost they would have to be able to swallow the idea that they will effectively vote to raise taxes on the top 2% of americans which most republicans said they do not want to do because they think it is bad for the economy. to answer your question, it is probably the biggest sweetener for republicans and seen some moderate democrats by the way is the estate tax. the estate tax is in place right now at a relatively low threshold. it would go up big time at the end of the year. and that is something that is very important to a lot of republicans. that could be a sweetener. i think probably the best argument the democrats have for some of those republicans is that they don't want to be in the way or they don't want to be responsible in any way for every american's taxes going up, including most importantly the people who really, really need that money, people who just aren't the wealthiest in this country. >> dana bash, six d
mitch mcconnell or other senators in the republican party will allow that to move forward. if something passes in the senate, i think it's likely that the house will follow suit. i think that takes the pressure off john boehner a little bit in terms of bringing something to the floor that his minions don't love. >> take care, drew. >>> two firefighters shot and wounded on christmas eve are improving and starting physical therapy. joseph hoffstetter and the other firefighter were shot after being called to a fire. we are starting to hear the 911 calls. >> multiple firemen down. multiple firemen shot. i am shot. i think it was an assault rifle. >> volunteers from other areas have stepped in to help the webster fire department. >> we're all family, yep, brothers and sisters. it will be a long time before this department gets over this. i understand, if they need us to come back and help out we'll be here. >> police say william spengler set the fire to lure the firefighters into a trap. he eventually killed himself. his sister was also found dead. >>> how does a small community deal with so
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